A 14 Hour Day With The JROTC Cadets: Here’s how it went

GENESIS News Editor, Felisha Campanello, travels with the JROTC Alpha Raider Team to their competition in Terre Haute, IN.

Felisha Campanello, News Editor

The Bus Ride

Departure was at 4:30 a.m. With the early morning wake up, there were a handful of sleeping cadets. Others conversated or listened to music and gathered their focus for the long day ahead.

Felisha Campanello
The cadets file off the bus at 7:30 a.m. for check-in and stretches at the JROTC Raider meet in Terre Haute, IN on Saturday, April 13.


Once arriving in Terre Haute, the cadets filed off the bus, marched to the tent, dropped their gear and started doing stretch workouts in formation.

Felisha Campanello
The cadets stretch for the first event at the JROTC meet at Terre Haute on Saturday, April 13. Everyone made sure they were warm for the 5k ahead.


Eight cadets, 3.1 miles, and an outstanding time of 25.36. The team leader, Kallie Canfield ran while carrying a flag to signify where their team began and where it ended. This 5k wasn’t ran for individual times. It was ran as a team. 

Throughout the run, Elkhart Central sophomore, Forrest Ludwick ran with the guide that represented our Alpha Raider team. “Motivating the other cadets was hard at first,” Ludwick said. “it’s a hard course and we all had to stick together.”

Whenever a teammate started to get tired, the other cadets would push them to keep their confidence even if they were working out of their comfort zone, encouraging them to keep going. 

Felisha Campanello
Junior Reese Morehead helps freshman Lauren Rutledge during the 5k run at the JROTC Raider competition. Teams were pushed out of their comfort zones to prove who will be the best of the best.

Rope Bridge

For the rope bridge part of the competition, each cadet was required to get across the rope without touching the ground. Junior John Whitmer helped the other cadets onto the rope and then proceeded to go across the rope on his own.

“The hardest part was screwing the safety lock on the clip. With the safety gloves, we had to focus on doing the right things at the right time,” Whitmer said. 

On average, this event took teams three minutes to complete; it took our Raiders a grand time of 1.42!

Felisha Campanello
Sophomore Carrolyn Kiner-Sprow crosses the rope bridge on Saturday, April 13 at the Raider competition at Terre Haute on Saturday, April 13. Kiner-Sprow and her teammates successfully completed the rope bridge in 1.42.

Personal Fitness Test

Each cadet competed in their own Personal Fitness Testing (PFT) which included a 1 ½ mile run, pushups, and sit-ups. This is the event that determined the MVP for females and males.

One minute of pain and a lifetime of glory.

— Major Dorman

“They [the other cadets] are amazing, each and everyone of them works hard too and them cheering me on gives me more confidence and motivation,” Canfield said.

Obstacle Course

The last event for the Alpha Raider team was a Marines style obstacle course.

Felisha Campanello
Junior John Whitmer bear-crawls in the mud during the obstacle course on Saturday, April 13 at Terre Haute for the JROTC Raider competition. If a team member touched the caution tape, their team lost points.

First, they took on the challenge of the gauntlet machine which is machine that holds back their arms, slowing down their momentum while they try to run. Then the team bear crawled on the ground avoiding strips of caution tape.

Felisha Campanello
Senior Gabriel Winters bear-crawls during the obstacle course event at the JROTC Raider meet on Saturday, April 13 in Terre Haute. The Alpha team finished the course with a time of 1.28.

After the bear crawl, the cadets sprinted for the 200 lb, one-man sled push. After crossing the line, they they then sprinted for the 250 lb. litter portion of the course, hauling a stretcher for 50 yards without dropping it.  

Their finishing time for the obstacle course was 1.28.

At this point, the cadets were tired for the last event, but they pushed their hardest like it was their first event.

“We found the best way to line our team members up so that we could tackle each section of the course as quickly as possible,” said junior Reese Morehead.

Felisha Campanello
JROTC Alpha Raider team finishing the Litter Carry at Terre Haute on April 13. Everyone had a role in the course and they all executed it well.


As everyone stood in formation, names were first called off for male and female MVP. Kallie Canfield earned first place out of 25 girls.

The Alpha Raider team brought home an outstanding third-place finish out of 13 teams.

“I’m very excited and proud of our team and what we did today,” said Sergeant Scott Rutledge.

Felisha Campanello
(Left to right) Junior Reese Morehead, Junior Devon Stallings, Senior Kallie Canfield, Junior Brayden Hines, and Junior John Whitmer discuss score from their Raider team competition on April 13 at Terre Haute. The team placed third overall.

Overall, the Alpha Raider JROTC team did a sensational job at their first meet of the season.

Their next meet is April 27, at Marion High School in Marion, Indiana. Wish our Raiders best of luck for the tough competition ahead!